The UK has recorded a further 13,864 coronavirus cases overnight.

This brings the total number of infections in the UK since the start of the pandemic to 575,679.

It marks a drop on yesterday’s daily figure of 17,540, which was an increase of more than 3,300 on the previous day.

The Department of Health also recorded another 87 deaths among people who tested positive for Covid-19.

The country’s official death toll now stands at 42,679.

However, separate figures published by the Office for National Statistics show there have now been more than 58,000 deaths registered in the UK where the virus was mentioned on the death certificate.


Earlier on Friday, British hospitals confirmed that a further 64 Covid patients had died – the highest increase since late June.

Of these new hospital fatalities, 56 were reported in England, six in Scotland and two in Wales. Northern Ireland recorded no new deaths.

The majority were recorded in hospitals in the northwest and northeast of England, where many towns and cities are bracing for a tightening up of restrictions.

Eight patients died in London where infections rates are beginning to rise, fuelling fears the capital could also soon be subject to tough new measures.

It comes as new figures suggested coronavirus cases are doubling about twice as fast in the North West, Yorkshire and the West Midlands as for the whole of England.

Experts behind the React study said the rate of growth of the epidemic across England has slowed in the last month, but the country was now at a “critical point in the second wave”.

Separate data from the Office for National Statistics estimated that 224,400 people in England had coronavirus between September 25 and October 1, equating to about one in 240 people.

The figures represent a big jump from 116,600 people who were estimated to have Covid-19 in the previous week.

Nottingham has the highest rate in England, with 760.6 cases per 100,000 people, a steep jump from 158.3 per 100,000 in the seven days to September 29.

Knowsley has the second highest rate, which has jumped from 391.1 to 657.6 per 100,000 people, while Liverpool is in third place, where the rate has also increased sharply, from 419 to 599.9.

In Scotland, new restrictions on pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes come into force from 6pm on Friday.

In other developments:

Scientists advising the Government said the current R value – the number of people an infected person will pass coronavirus on to – for the UK is between 1.2 and 1.5.

This is down slightly on last week when it was between 1.3 and 1.6.

The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) estimates the number of new infections is growing by between four and nine per cent every day.

Sage said it was “almost certain that the epidemic continues to grow exponentially across the country, and is confident that the transmission is not slowing.

“While the R value remains above 1.0, infections will continue to grow at an exponential rate.

“This is currently the case for every region of England and all have positive growth rates, reflecting increases in the number of new infections across the country.”

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